All About Me!

Praying Mama to three boys.
Blessed beyond measure.

instagram: theboyandthelittles

30 December 2013

Christmas Break 2013

Here we are.
Christmas Break 2013.  
It feels like forever since I have entered a post, and well, I was right.  It has been forever.
Off to an outstanding start to the school year with some of the world's greatest 4th graders.  They are precious and we are learning, working hard, and having so much fun.

I feel like I have blinked my eyes, and here we are.  Christmas Break.
TWO.  FULL.  WEEKS!!!!!!!!!!

Can I get a YIPPEEE?!?!?!?!

This is a first in my entire career.  Never, ever have we had two full weeks.  YIPPEE!!!!

So, precious break.  You are half done, and let me tell you. . .you have planed yourself firm in my heart and you are doing an excellent job allowing me to soak up all of the snuggles and magic that you can muster.

Just some highlights in pictures. . . 

Precious Max caught in a quite moment reading his favorite 
book to his beloved Bash.

A delightful morning routine filled with snuggles, twinkle lights, and reminder to

Magical preparations as we hosted our first EVER North Pole Party. 
It will now be a yearly tradition.  So much fun
was had by ALL and millions of memories were made!!!!

Christmas Morning Puppet Shows.  So much JOY in one room.

And the day after Christmas took us to Grand Forks.  Because we just know that is 
exactly what EVERYONE wants to do the day after Christmas.  At least it was to see our
 boy play some fun hockey.  
Yes, the stick ponies and hats were a hit and took many trips up and down 
the long hallways.  Thank you Hilton for putting up with us.  HA!

 Tomorrow is New Year's Eve.  I can hardly believe it.  It means my precious Ollie Finn will almost be three, and Testing season is right around the corner.  So, with this last week of break, we plan to "Go BIG or Go Home."  There are so many more memories to be made and sweet snuggles to be savored.  I'm off to grab a few of those right now from my spirited red-head as the littlest one sleeps.

What are you doing with this precious Holiday season?

20 June 2013

And we're off. . .

We have found our groove.  This summer thing is really, really starting to agree with us.
After a week or so home, I feel like I finally know my darlings better than I do during the school year.
So, we roll.  We roll with this summer thing and we are really getting it.
And, it's heavenly.

We drive.  A lot.  The boy has places to go and things to do, so the rumpus in the back seat can be quite entertaining. . .until it's not.

 The flowers are FINALLY exploding and I LOVE IT!  The colors are amazing and my garden needs some attention, but so do the littles.  So, the weeds will have to wait.  As will the laundry, windows, floors, and dust.  My littles are only small for so long, and they trump everything. xo

The boy and his dog continue to bond.  Bauer has blessed us so crazy much and we're having so much fun getting to know this 63 pound dog who TRULY believes he is a 5 lb. lap dog!  Cracks us up.  All the time.  He'll be one next month. . .and they said he wouldn't get to be 50 lbs.  Ha.  Right.

 So proud of the boy, who earned the MVP award at the Varsity All Star Game for Spring lacrosse.  It's a good day when he can play the game he loves and be recognized for just working hard!  He was so very thrilled, and we are just so very proud of him.

This sweet and precious little continues to grow and change each and every day.  The little "baby" look is going away. . .he's talking up a storm.  Most of the time we can really understand each other. . .and then he'll bust out his best foreign language and carry on for a paragraph or two, then look at me and say: "YES?!"  Yes, sweet ollie.  Whatever you want.  For now.  xo

The red head little makes us laugh a billion times each day.  He is our "spirited" one and keeps us on our toes!  If you follow me on IG (theboyandthelittles) you witnessed his dropped drawers and his joyful proclamation of "MAMA!  I peed overboard!!!!!"  He was so proud.  Just so, so proud.

My love continues to work.  He's amazing.  He loves us more than we can imagine and provides for us more than he should have to.  He will never, ever know how much he is appreciated and how all of his boys talk about him during the day while he is away.  

As for me?  I'm thankful for the gift of being able to figure this summer thing out.  We are far from over scheduled, but scheduled just enough to feel like we're doing somethings that are important as well as have a lot of fun along the way.  

Life is good.
The snuggles are many.
The giggles are uncountable.
We are blessed.

06 June 2013

Here we go. . .

This is completely NOT how I planned my first blog post of the summer to be.

But, oh well.  I'm rolling with it.

Summer is here!  YAHOO!  I should be all "Yippee and YES!!!"  And I am!  But, I'm kinda not.  I'm a little more like "Woah. . .really?"  Super pumped to send the last class to 5th grade!  No worries about that!  They're so ready AND they'll be AWESOME!!!

But, "Really?"  Home with my kiddos?  All.  Day.  Long.  OH, boys.  Three of them.  Oh my.

So, this hero of mine talks a lot about being a "truth teller."
Here it is!  Holy cats,  scared.
A little scared.
I know 24 other children better than I know my own!  It's the truth.

So, truth is out. . .today has been a good day.  It's been hard. ..just a little though.
It has been a mellow day.
All in all, quite delightful.  Not too boring, not too exciting. . .just right actually.
It's like sticking my toe into a chilly pool. . .slowly.  That's how we're going to roll with this new summer thing for awhile!  Or, at least until summer decides to show up and be kind here in good ol' freezin-our-tails-off MN.  We'll be ready.

In the mean time.
I have fed the children.
Twice.  (it's only 3:00pm)

We have played puzzles.
Three time outs.  Two for the red head, one for me.
Experienced our first EVER Kiwi Crate project.
Moo, the happy woodpecker.  Thanks Kiwi Crate!

Read books.  Had the radio on more than the TV (that's awesome). Chased poor Bauer (the boy dog) around the house.  More than we should admit to.  Giggled.  A lot.  Shared some precious snuggles and lots and lots of hugs.

So, here I am summer.
I'm showing up.  Ready.  Prepared to be a bit overwhelmed at times, but I'm thrilled that you're here to stay for awhile.

Feeling blessed.
Tomorrow, we hope to tackle creating the summer 'bucket list!'
What's on yours?
Do share!!


21 May 2013

happy heart.

That moment when EIGHT varsity lacrosse boys show up. . .

completely unannounced.

They're hungry and they want to hang out.

These are the Mom Moments I LIVE FOR.

My heart is beyond full of J O Y.

I just want this moment to plant itself in my heart and stay awhile.
What makes your heart happy?

Off to restock my fridge. . .

It's the little things. . .

It's the little things I'm holding close these days.  
The moments I want to last a little longer. . . 
Those moments I want to make sure that I remember. . . 

We're in a crazy season right now.
The school year is almost ending (YIPPEE). . .I send another group of 4th graders on their way (always bittersweet). . . .The boy ends another school year (how on earth does this continue to happen?!?!). . . the lacrosse season will soon move into another crazy schedule (hang on and enjoy the ride). . . the littles will be home with me all summer long (let's keep it real here. . . . i get a little tired just thinking about it). . . 

walks will be longer. . .
bed time will have more snuggles. . .
books will be read. . .
hands will be held. . .
knees will be skinned. . .
bikes will be ridden. . .
fish will be caught. . .
ice cream will drip down chins. . .
songs will be sung. . .
fun will be had.

I will search for JOY in the very little things that happen each and every day!
I will plant those seconds in my heart and pray they stick around for awhile.  Even when things are crazy.  Things are always going to be a little crazy.

Through it all, God will be faithful.

Smiles will be big.

life will still be good. xo

lacrosse with moo.  

swing happy.

good gravy.  driving ms. daisy. 

Mother's Day love.

What do YOU plan on doing this summer?!

leave me a note!

12 May 2013

Show me how. . .

The four most precious words to come out of my three year old's mouth today. 

"Show me how, Mama."

Oh, my sweet and precious little.  I will do my best.

It is my hope that I will show you how

. . .to be kind.  It won't always be easy, but we can do it if we try.  You will learn, precious love, that a little bit of kindness will go a long, long ways.

. . .to pray through the joy and praise through the storms.

. . .to play hard.

. . . to just show up.

. . .to have fun with your brothers without cause for a trip to the ER.

. . . to cheer for others.  always.

. . . to attempt to keep it as simple.

. . .to be the best sport possible.

. . . to be brave.  Our God is bigger than any scary thing we face, and he's got our back.

And to show you always how much you are loved.

No.  Matter.  What.

06 May 2013

flower power.

Me:  What did you have for lunch today, Max?

Max:  pb&j.  it was good.

Me:  What did you do today?

Max:  I played hard.  I played outside.  I took my shoes off.  I was happy.

Me:  What was the best part of your day?

Max:  making you the flower.

Such a precious and proud little.

Oh, I love him so crazy much.

On another fun note, the boy made the varsity lacrosse team.  He is still over-the-moon excited.  They're playing now, as I'm home with the littles.  They're up 9-1 at the half.  THAT should make for a happy boy.  Proud mama.

What is making you happy today?

27 April 2013

Happy Hangover

Spring has finally arrived in Minnesota!  Can I get a "YAHOO!!!!!  YIPPEE!!!!! YIPPEEE!!!!  YIPPEEEE!!!!!!!" ?!?!?!  YES!  It's here.  Windows are open, birds are singing, and all is well with the world.

Today I am holding tight to the happy hangover from a super special night!  I had the outstanding opportunity to go and listen to Glennon Doyle Melton.  And YES, she was just as amazing as I had anticipated her to be.

The church was packed.  I was not surprised   There was this buzz of excited women who were there to listen to her story, hear her express her faith, and it was nothing short of a massive blessing.  Her two favorite verses, are also two of mine. . . . her message of "Here I Am. . ."  and "Be still" ring so very true in my ears and flow through my veins on a daily basis.

Her laugh is contagious  her spirit . . . so very BRAVE!  I am so blessed that she showed up.  It was an honor to listen, to allow myself the time to just be still, and to soak in all the love in that church.

Meeting her after and sharing a brief moment is a blessing that will stick with me for a very, very long time!!!  YIPPEE!!!!!
Love wins!
We CAN do hard things!  Brilliant words to live by!  xoxo

Precious friend Lisa, Glennon, and me. . .the giddy teacher.  There were hugs and squeals of JOY!

Happy Saturday.
be blessed.

off to go and play in the sun with my loves and hold tight to this happiness hangover! 

05 April 2013

Our Sweet Life

There is heaven in this boy. I know I have said this before. But seriously. My little Shepard boy, Ollie Finn, constantly has his darling blankie on his head. I caught him this evening in a moment of peace playing with his leap pad and chilling with his blankie. Love this little. CRAZY much!

Easter was amazing. The promise, the hope, the feeling of love is amazing. He is risen!!  It doesn't get any better than that. Ever. Amen. My boy and the littles were precious with Easter egg hunts, little baskets, books, snuggles, prayers, and love. We had a blessed day. Pure joy.

We have a happy and blessed house. Even when it's a crazy hot mess.  Which. . .is . . . well, most of the time. We are just blessed beyond measure. Loved and forgiven.  It doesn't get much better than that.

Well, we are back at into our groove. Spring break feels like it was forever ago and I can hardly believe how fast it went. It has been a blessing to return to happy darlings at school and get back into a routine with the crazies here at the home.

Last night brought my normal bible study date. It couldn't have come soon enough.  We a loving every second of our Esther study.  These women are more precious to me than gold. I love them. So crazy much and they continue to bless me so much. What a gift they are.  I also don't know how Beth Moore does it, but she's rocking this one right out of the park. This study is truly nothing short of earth moving.  Check out the happy mail day I was blessed enough to enjoy.  A whole stack of Bloom books!!!  YIPPEE YIPPEE YIPPEE!!! PURE JOY!!!  I can hardly contain myself!!!!

Have mercy...I don't remember the last time I was this excited about getting the mail.....then today arrived. And Carry On, Warrior. . . it is HERE!  Sleep is so overrated. I can't wait to dive into these!!!  So excited. I can hardly stand it!!!

That's all for now.
Correcting to do now that the littles are down for the night and the big is at hockey.  A moment of peace with a purple correcting pen.  Ahhhh.


26 March 2013


love my brother.

darling dinner date before church. xo

OMGoodness!  I could not LOVE this any more!
(cuff purchased from farmgirlpaints @etsy)

silly tubby boys.

question asked:  "Moo, what would you do if I gave you a cardboard box?"
reply:  "Mama, I would build a spaceship and fly to Buzz."

sun setting on a perfect NO SCHOOL snow day.  LOVE!!!!!!

morning perfection.


my new toy.

202!!!!  Best section EVER at the MN State HS Hockey Tourney.


Spring Break

Spring Break.
One of the best weeks of the entire year for those of us who teach. I truly don't know who was more pumped. Me or my students?!?!  I think it was me. Hands down.

Breaks are filled with many, many hugs, morning snuggles, play dates, afternoon naps, and an overall feeling of being blessed.

I was behind thrilled that break started off with a happy hour with my dear and precious team. Anytime the five of us are together it always ends up with side splitting laughter. You know the kind. Where your cheeks hurt into the next day. Well, mine hurt for almost two days. What memories.  I am blessed to teach with them.

We have continued to have more "boy fun" according to moo.

He loved his hot coca date and trip to the zoo.  All the time I am looking for that perfect picture that I can take of my sweets. All the while, I am learning that it is really quite a challenge to please a 2, a 3, and a 15 year old at the same time. It truly makes me stop and think. How in the world did it come to this??  Ollie Finn is happy as long as there is enough food and snuggles to go around. Oh, and octopus blankie. Don't forget that. The teenager, struggling this week because "EVERYONE is on a trip to somewhere AMAZING this week .....what are we doing today?.....lets go DO something......and I wish the coach would just post the lax teams already......" mode. Yep. It could be worse. His pleas never last more then 32 seconds and he is right back to his carefree, happy self. There have been many games of pick-up basketball in the entryway, hide and go seek, and chase between he and the littles. It never fails. They all eventually end up in a hog pile of boy fun, laughter, and tumbles. It makes my heart soar and then quickly question if my house will ever, ever, ever be clean again.  Probably not.

Being home makes me long for the Pinterest house. The Pinterest playrooms. The Pinterest vacations and then I serious want to kick my own butt. Seriously. Why does being home make me want to gut the house and just start over?  So, down to the dungeon for some toys that never get played with, off to target for some shelves (darn you Pinterest). Oh, and if I only knew how to quilt. ( Darn you instagram) Must. Figure. That. Out. Soon. Then all will be well with the world, RIGHT?!?!?!

So, it was off to the Galleria with moo in his hockey helmet, jersey, and gloves to fine new quilts for the boys' room since I don't know how to quilt.  Oh, the joy that child brought to the Monday night shoppers. Unlike anything I have ever seen before.

So instead of quilting for my children and gutting my home I will find an insane amount of joy with the homemade lunch we were able to enjoy together, the zoo memories made, and the littles who are totally crashed this afternoon due to the amazing moments that have wore them out. And the teenager who met us at the door and was thrilled to have us back from the zoo.

Life is really something.

happy friends.

precious littles at the zoo!  Yes, I know.  Max has his hockey helmet, jersey, and gloves.  Do you KNOW what it's like to try to leave the house without those three items?  Have mercy.


02 March 2013

Smooshy Frosting.

He is two.  I loved one so much. . .I can hardly stand what two will bring for this precious little peanut.

love this little bug more every second . . . truly the happiest child I have ever met in my entire life.  Love his little voice, love his sweet chubby little hands, love the little chunk feet that now run at full speed all . the. time.  so fun, the little pitter patter of feet.  All boy.  My boy.  I love his smooshy little body, the way he snuggles in and just melts into my shoulder.  His giggles stop me in my tracks.  

There is heaven in this boy.

I love his smooshiness.
I love that he is my frosting.
I love this boy.
My precious ollie finn.


17 February 2013



loved beyond measure. . .over the moon and back again.

15 February 2013

What he says. . .

Oh, my little moo. . . and the things that come out of his mouth.
And. . .here is how it went.

Me:  Moo. . .do you know what love is?
Moo:  Yes,  Mama, it is you.  You are love.
(okay. . .melting heart and eyes fill with tears!  Love that boy.)

He continues. . . “Mama, love is also when I piddle on Kelly’s floor.  Then. . . she gets mad because I missed the toilet.  But then, I cry for a minute, and then she forgives me.  Mama, that is love.”

Yes, my little moo. . . that is love. 

Me:  Moo. . .who do you love?
Moo:  I love ollie, and heho, and dada, and bauer, and you!  And you all love me the best!


14 February 2013

Who am I?

Lent photo challenge no. 1.

I am the mom.
I am a wife.
I am the lover of my bigs, my littles, . .friends, family. . .the list goes on.  You get the idea.
I am the undeserving receiver of forgiveness and grace.
I am filled with faith. 

I feel that, at times, I am a failure of a mother.
Take last night for example.  Valentine’s Eve.  As a teacher and a mother of three boys, one would think that I was elated for all the cute, pink. . . .stuff.  Honestly, I. . .again this year. . .did not have my crap together.  I can’t stand Valentine’s day.  There.  I said it.  As a single mom for 10 years, it was the most dreaded day of the year. . .so I would shower the boy with gifts (matchbox cars.) and hearts (dye cuts from school.) and pizza (frozen) for dinner.  (come on . . .at the time, it was the best I could do.)
I still feel that I should be more excited about this day.  I’m not.
Last minute I print free online cards that we need to color.  (yep, the night before.)
I bake banana bread . . .and lovingly slice it into heart shapes. (mom of the year material, right there.)
I muster every bit of patience to just get through the night knowing that this idea of Valentine’s Day, eve, whatever will never, ever match up to the ‘dream world’ that is in my head.  Bracing myself for the disappointment.  Kinda like photo-shoot-monster-mom who appears for family portraits.  Yes, I am that mom too!

So, who am I?
I am the mom who reads the same book to my littles each and every night and pause to let moo fill in the blanks with the right words.
I am the mom who colors the valentines for the littles beacuse they'd rather play pirates.
I am the mom who loves my boys so darn much that at moments I truly think hat my heart is absolutely going to EXPLODE!  I mean really explode people.  It hurts sometimes.  Pain.
I am the mom who tries to love them the best that I can each and every day.  Not just on Valentine’s day.  I’m over that whole date.
I am the mom who is married to the most AMAZING dad.  I’m not sure I’d be able to breathe if he weren’t here to walk beside me. 

I’m that mom.
And for today, I am going to accept that I am just good enough.
Now, go spread the love people! 

02 February 2013

hands and piggies.

There is just something about these little fingers.  They're totally toddler fingers. . .still a little chubby, but starting to look like little boy hands.  Three is amazing, there is so much one can do at three, and Moo does all of it and so much more.  But last night, as he crawled up on my lap. . .his red hair in every which direction, evidence that he had enjoyed a 'good sleep', he snuggled in and folded his hands.
"They're praying hands, Mama."  
Yes, Moo. . .yes, they sure are.  And I love your sweet and perfect little praying hands.
These are the precious hands that wrap around me with a hug as the moo declares it a 
"1. . .2. . .3. . .squeeeeeeeeeze" kind of hug.  Nothing can beat it.
I wonder what these hands are going to do to make a difference in this world.  
Will he heal others?  Will they be helpful to those in need?  Will they fix things?  Where will they go?  

I pray over these little, precious, chubby toddler hands.

And then there are those piggies.  I've got to get the little bug to sit still long enough to capture his chunks.  Oh, those feet. . . his right one, in this picture, trying to get away. . as we just don't have ANY sit in us. . .on the go.  The littlest piggies are getting ready to turn two.  TWO?  Really?  Where in the world does the time go.  I can't believe the little bug is almost two.  It will be here before we know it, then those little sausage fingers and chunk feet will be leaving us.  It's crazy, the baby is turning into sweet little toddler.  
We've also experienced a complete word explosion with the little one.  Love his little voice.  Love his little run. . .love love love the way he squints his eyes when he smiles. . .and the minute I pick up my phone he screams. . ."cheeeeeese!"  love my bug and love his face.

 Moo noticed "Mama, we're all stripes today."  So a picture moment it was!  

thankful for saturday.
thankful for my loves.

27 January 2013

Love. These. Boys.

State of Hockey.


It's what The Boy loves.
He loves it more than anything. . . just like a 15 year old should.  Days without hockey are long and he finds himself longing for the ice.  Thank goodness we live on a rather large pond where he can spend countless hours during the winter months.  There is truly nothing better than watching him skate, alone, on a rink in our very own back yard.  There is truly nothing like getting a glimpse into his 'hockey world'.  The one without the coaches, the pressure from the teammates, the fear of him getting hit from behind, the stress of winning the game.
He can just be.

I can't begin to imagine the imaginary roar of the crowd, as he single handedly shoots. . .and scores. . .unassisted.  GOOOOOAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!!
It's magical.
It's sacred.
It's my boy.  The ice.  The puck.  The game.

Then there are the days where it's just so much fun!  Youth hockey at its absolute BEST!!!!  With the hard work of some really, really great dads. . .the pond hockey tourney was a HUGE success.  There is nothing better here in the State of Hockey, than the joy of being able to place a smooch on the Golden Shovel.  The boy got to do just that with the help of some fun buddies!
The Flow Rockers won the shovel!

This picture makes my heart soar.  The huge, open mouth smile. . . again.  My boy.  Not much better than watching him play some puck.

The boy. . .the same boy who finds so much joy in the game he loves also being the world's most amazing big brother as he teaches the Moo to skate.

Oh, how I love this boy.